Practical neurology
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Dr Margie Sharpe has been saying for a number of years, research is needed to look at the effects of mild traumatic head injuries and the connections to dementia later in life. She has said,
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“If only we could talk to the brains of our patients with movement disorders caused by disease (e.g. Stroke, Parkinson’s disease) and trauma (e.g. acquired head trauma, concussion), it would enhance our clinical practice.”
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“We should remember the elderly, some of whom fall, often repeatedly, and hit their heads; remain vulnerable to cognitive changes quite apart from the physical injuries they sustain.”
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“Concussion is confusing us all”

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Interestingly, the paper “Concussion is confusing us all” by David J Sharp and Peter O Jenkins takes this insight one step further, claiming,
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“It is time to stop using the term concussion as it has no clear definition and no pathological meaning.”
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The paper abstract continues, “This confusion is increasingly problematic as the management of ‘concussed’ individuals is a pressing concern.
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Historically, it has been used to describe patients briefly disabled following a head injury, with the assumption that this was due to a transient disorder of brain function without long-term sequelae. However, the symptoms of concussion are highly variable in duration and can persist for many years with no reliable early predictors of outcome.
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Using vague terminology for posttraumatic problems leads to misconceptions and biases in the diagnostic process, producing uninterpretable science, poor clinical guidelines, and confused policy. We propose that the term concussion should be avoided. Instead, neurologists and other healthcare professionals should classify the severity of traumatic brain injury and then attempt to precisely diagnose the underlying cause of post-traumatic symptoms.
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Reference:
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Sharp, David & Jenkins, Peter. (2015). Concussion is confusing us all. Practical neurology. 15. 172-186. 10.1136/practneurol-2015-001087. It is time to stop using the term concussion as it has no clear definition and no pathological meaning. This confusion is increasingly problematic as the management of ‘concussed’ individuals is a pressing concern. Historically, it has been used to describe patients briefly disabled following a head injury, with the assumption that this was due to a transient disorder of brain function without long-term sequelae. However, the symptoms of concussion are highly variable in duration, and can persist for many years with no reliable early predictors of outcome. Using vague terminology for post-traumatic problems leads to misconceptions and biases in the diagnostic process, producing uninterpretable science, poor clinical guidelines and confused policy. We propose that the term concussion should be avoided. Instead neurologists and other healthcare professionals should classify the severity of traumatic brain injury and then attempt to precisely diagnose the underlying cause of post-traumatic symptoms. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.